The SS-23 Spider, 9K714, or OTP-23 Oka (depending on who's nomenclature you are using) was a direct replacement for the aging 9P117 SCUD tactical missile system. Produced in 1979 and removed from service in 1987, it was a significant improvement over previous rocket systems in terms of accuracy, mobility, and speed to launch.
The chassis was based on the BAZ-6944 designed and manufactured by the Bryansk Automobile Plant (Bryansky Avtomobilny Zavod) that specializes in off-road wheeled equipment.
What does this have to do with resin wheels? Well, off-road vehicles, especially Tactical Ballistic Missile Launchers, need to remain mobile (read unstuck) while being off-road. The BAZ designed chassis uses the 2 front axles for steerage, all four axles are powered, the vehicle is fully amphibious, and it incorporates "floatation" tires i.e. "fatty" tires. This means that all that weight of a fully loaded vehicle is going to show in the tire.
DEF Models has made a very nicely detailed replacement resin wheel set for the 1/35th scale Trumpeter SS-23 "Spider" kit, #85505. This set is a direct replacement for the kit rubber wheel and kit parts B30 & B7 (front hub and detail). The rear hubs, and their details, are still needed AND you have to be careful to put the correct wheels on the correct rear hubs. There are 4 wheel sets for the rear (2 left and 2 right - do NOT follow trumpeters mistake and have the driverís side rear wheels with the tread incorrect), 1 pair for the front left and 1 pair for the front right.
First, this is a resin wheel set that is great for people who do not like working with rubber wheels. DEF Models casting is superb with no casting flaws and no seam on the wheels I have. So you just wash them up with some dish soap, dry them off, and you are ready to work with them! I appreciate the work that has gone into making these wheels that simple to use...I hate cleaning up seam lines. As a bonus you also get a set of paint masks to make that aspect easier.
Second, these wheels are weighted to show a nice compression of the wheel. This conveys not only the impression of weight, but it also gives the look of the wheel having buoyancy rather than rigidity...another bolster to the image of the vehicle being amphibious.
The wheels measure out at 37mm in diameter, a direct replacement for the Trumpeter wheel. I do not have a direct measurement of the wheel, but compared to photos it scales very well. Tread and sidewall detail are exact matches for pictures online.
As a side note, I have the Miniman Factory kit. I have placed the wheels from this kit in the photos to show the size comparison and how the wheel attaches (Yellow colored wheel in lower left corner). The DEF Models wheels would work as replacements but the Miniman factory hub piece would have to be modified to allow it to fit on the DEF Models wheel, or some other arrangement would have to be used.
Highs: Seamless resin wheels with compression to give the "fatty" tires a look of weight. Excellent quality with no fit issues for added kit parts.Lows: None noted.Verdict: An excellent replacement wheel set.
About Jacques Duquette (Jacques) FROM: MINNESOTA, UNITED STATES
The first model I remember building was a glow-in-the-dark P-38, running around my bedroom in the dark flying it, and stubbing my toes. I do a lot less running around with glowing models now. I mainly focus on 1/35 armor and figures, with Modern Russian military vehicles being my favorite. I a...